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Florida: Early voting begins October 22!

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

In some parts of the state, registered voters can cast their ballot early beginning today! The early voting schedule varies by county and will end on Saturday, November 3. Florida’s general election is set for Tuesday, November 6.

Here’s a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana policy reform: Andrew Gillum (D) supports legalizing and regulating marijuana for adults’ use, while Ron DeSantis (R) opposes legalization but is supportive of implementing Florida’s medical marijuana law. You can find information on Florida’s current marijuana policies here.

For more information on early voting and Election Day voting, including where you can cast your ballot and when voting locations will be open, check out the state’s elections website here.

Please forward this to your network, and be sure to get out and vote!

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Texas: Marijuana policy voter guide released, early voting begins October 22

October 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Our allies at Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy released a voter guide for the upcoming election. Early voting starts today, so please check it out, spread the word, and head to the polls!

Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy’s coalition partners surveyed state and federal candidates and provided their unedited responses. They also included voting records from the last two legislative sessions for state-level incumbents.

Find out where your candidates stand.

Early Voting: October 22 – November 2, 2018
Election Day: November 6, 2018

For more information on where, how, and when to vote, visit VoteTexas.Gov.

Unfortunately, Texas doesn’t allow voters to collect petitions to put initiatives on the ballot. Only state lawmakers can initiate changes to the state’s marijuana policies. Who gets elected in November will be key to deciding when and if Texas enacts a medical cannabis law and stops criminalizing cannabis consumers.

So, please get educated and get voting!

Many thanks to Heather Fazio of Texans for Responsible Marijuana Policy, Texas NORML, and everyone else who worked on the voter guide!

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Vermont general election voter guide published

October 16th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Early voting is already underway for the Vermont general election, which is scheduled for Tuesday, November 6. Before you vote, please check out our legislative voter guide to learn where candidates for state representative and state senator stand on marijuana policy. Then, please read our guide on the candidates for governor and lieutenant governor.

This year, we sent candidates a survey consisting of only one question: “Do you support regulating and taxing the production and sale of cannabis in Vermont for use by adults 21 and older?” Our voter guides include responses from candidates for state representative, state senator, and governor, in addition to public statements and incumbent legislators’ votes on the legalization bill. If a candidate in your district has not responded to the survey, we encourage you to reach out to them directly and ask their position!

For information on where and how to vote in Vermont, click here.

Again, please take time to read our voter guide for state legislative races and our gubernatorial voter guide before you vote in the November 6 general election. Please share the voter guides with your family and friends!

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South Carolina: November 6 is General Election Day!

October 16th, 2018 1 Comment Kate Zawidzki

South Carolina’s general election, set for Tuesday, November 6, is just 21 days away. The governor’s race and every House of Representatives seat is on the ballot. This is a particularly important election as lawmakers are expected to vote on a medical cannabis bill in 2019, and it will likely need the support of the governor. Those in office will have a huge impact on the future of South Carolina’s patients and their treatment options.

Our voter guide is now available online. It includes all House candidates who either co-sponsored the 2018 medical cannabis bill or who responded to our questionnaire on medical cannabis support. It also includes committee votes and the candidates for governor. While James Smith (D) is a strong supporter of allowing medical cannabis, Gov. Henry McMaster (R) said he would not sign a bill unless law enforcement signs off — which they show no inclination of doing.

Voters’ choices this year will have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in the state. If you are registered to vote, know where your candidates stand, and be sure to vote!

If you haven’t registered to vote yet, you have until October 17. For more information, including polling places and other key information, check out the state’s elections website here.

 

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The Illinois general election is around the corner

October 16th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

The Illinois general election takes place on November 6. It’s fast approaching, and voters this year will have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in Illinois. Lawmakers continue to look closely at ending marijuana prohibition and legalizing cannabis for adults 21 and over, and the differences between the two major party candidates for governor couldn’t be bigger on this issue: JB Pritzker (D) has come out in strong support of legalizing and regulating marijuana, while Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) remains opposed.

Take a minute to check out our Illinois Voter Guide and see where the candidates on your ballot stand on cannabis reform. Not all the candidates have a voting history on cannabis bills in the state House or Senate, but for those that do, we’ve summarized the voting record on key cannabis-related bills over the past several years.

If you haven’t registered to vote yet, you have until October 21 to register online. For more information, including where you can cast your ballot and when voting locations will be open, check out the state’s website here.

In nearby Michigan, voters will have an opportunity to legalize marijuana themselves. But in Illinois, there’s no citizen initiative process, so only lawmakers can end the wasteful and cruel policy of prohibition. This year’s elections will likely have a huge impact on the future of cannabis policy in Illinois. Now is the time for voters who support a better path for Illinois to make their voice heard.

 

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Register to vote and make your voice heard!

September 28th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Click here for help registering in your state.

Election Day may not be until Tuesday, November 6, but in many states voter registration deadlines are coming up soon! MPP has teamed up with non-profit Rock the Vote to make it easier for our subscribers to register in their state. Just click here, and their simple tool will help you fill out the voter registration form in your state or tell you where to register online, if your state allows that.

After you fill out their form online, you’ll get an email with your official registration form attached, and all you have to do is print it and mail it in! Easy. Can’t make it to the polls on Election Day? You can also click here if you want to learn more about voting policies in your state, like early voting or voting by mail, as well as whether you can vote if you have a prior conviction.

Voters in Utah, Michigan, North Dakota, and Missouri will get to vote on marijuana initiatives this year, and MPP or our coalition partners have released voter guides in New Hampshire and Maryland. Click here to learn more, and please get out and vote!

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Join MPP at the Second Annual Cannabis Law Institute September 7 and 8 in Washington, D.C.

September 5th, 2018 1 Comment Kate Zawidzki

This year, the National Cannabis Bar Association’s Second Annual Cannabis Law Institute will take place on September 7 and 8 in Washington, D.C. at the George Washington University Law School.

Featuring some of the nation’s leading attorneys, academics, and politicians, this event will convene the best minds and visionaries working in the cannabis industry and reform movement for two days of panels and discussion. Programming is focused on education for attorneys, and you can receive 11+ CLE credits for select jurisdictions. Evenings will feature networking events.

We’re excited to announce that MPP’s Deputy Director Matt Schweich will be moderating the panel discussion on Federalism & States’ Rights, which will also include MPP’s Director of Federal Policies, Don Murphy.

You’re invited to attend by registering here. Use the code “friendsofncba” to receive $200 off the full ticket price, and if you are a member of NCBA, you get an additional $100 off.

With over 60 speakers and panelists from organizations like the Brookings Institution, the National Cannabis Industry Association, Americans for Safe Access, and leading cannabis law firm Vicente Sederberg, the conference will address the most challenging areas of law as they relate to the cannabis industry, including banking, tax, finance, intellectual property, labor and employment, corporate governance, and more. Congressmen Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and David Joyce of Ohio will also be in attendance as part of the keynote conversation on Friday morning.

If you live in the D.C. metro area, you don’t want to miss this important event. We hope to see you there!

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Del. governor signs expungement bill; primary election is Thursday

September 4th, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Last Wednesday, Gov. John Carney signed into law a bill that allows hundreds of Delawareans to clear their records of marijuana possession convictions!

The new law applies to individuals who have a single conviction on their record. (A second conviction, whether it’s marijuana-related or otherwise, would disqualify the individual.) Delaware decriminalized simple possession of marijuana back in 2015, but records from old marijuana charges can shut the door on opportunities.

Now, individuals with a single conviction for possessing up to an ounce of marijuana automatically qualify to clear their record. To receive an expungement, individuals first request their certified records from the State Bureau of Identification. Then, they pay a fee and fill out a form to apply for mandatory expungement. The expungement forms are on the Courts website, under the Superior Court heading, and are listed by county.

Primary Election Day is Thursday!

In other news, Delaware’s Primary Election Day is coming up this Thursday, September 6. Polls are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Only registered Democrats can vote for Democratic candidates, and only registered Republicans can vote on the Republican ticket. You can find your polling place and read your sample ballot here.

Our allies at the Delaware Cannabis Advocacy Network have put together a comprehensive voter guide with the results of their candidate surveys and incumbents’ voting records. If you’re a Delaware resident, check it out, share it on social media, and don’t forget to vote if you’re able to!

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That Cannabis Show makes mid-September debut in Springfield, Massachusetts

August 29th, 2018 1 Comment Kate Zawidzki

MPP’s Matt Simon will lead panel discussion Saturday, September 15 — premium tickets available at a discount for MPP supporters!

Join MPP at That Cannabis Show September 15 and 16 in Springfield, Massachusetts! On Saturday, September 15, at 1:30 p.m., MPP’s New England Political Director, Matt Simon, will host a panel discussion exploring the status of legalization and regulation efforts in the six New England states and New York. The panel, titled “The Laws: They Are A-Changing,” will feature state legislators and leading reform advocates from several states. See below for information on the event and how to register.

Show details:

What: That Cannabis Show
Where: The MassMutual Center, 1277 Main Street, Springfield, MA
When: September 15 and 16

What to expect:

A bustling tradeshow floor
Business-focused programming
Entrepreneurs’ resource row
Celebrity talent
CannaBliss film festival
Mainstage entertainment

Click here to purchase tickets, and use code MPP for a 50% discount on all premium tickets!

We hope to see you there!

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California key cannabis bills advance; public comment period continues on proposed rules

August 22nd, 2018 No Comments Kate Zawidzki

Two compassionate cannabis-related bills are advancing, and, if you’re a California resident, now is a good time to voice your support. Here’s a rundown:

AB 1793 would make expungement automatic for cannabis-related convictions that today are no longer considered crimes. It passed the Assembly in May, the Senate earlier today, and it’s now headed to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk! If you live in California, let Gov. Brown know it’s time to repair the harm caused by outdated marijuana-war policy. Californians shouldn’t be branded with a scarlet letter for conduct that is now legal.

Meanwhile, SB 829 would waive cultivation fees for donations medical cannabis businesses make to low- or no-income patients. This bill passed the Senate on May 17 followed by three Assembly committees after that. Now it faces an Assembly floor vote. If you’re a Californian and you haven’t already, use this link to send a message to your Assemblymember in support.

Finally, it’s not too late to comment on proposed agency rules for cannabis businesses. For the proposed text, summaries, and contact info for submitting comments, visit the state’s website. Comments must be received by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, August 27.

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